This Papa Is Preaching More Than Just Nike Slogans
When a papa preaches like Mike Cruse does, I can’t help but pay attention and, possibly, cry. His post “To Be A Dad Is To be Flawed, And Loved”- found on his blog Papa Does Preach - feels more like poetry than biographical story. It’s due to the vulnerability and honesty lining this papa’s every syllable -- no doubt a clear and powerful reminder of the importance of fatherhood to fathers, themselves, as well as families and kids.
Rare is it that you come across a blogger or writer, for that matter, who can capture so much about true life in so few paragraphs. Mike accomplishes this and beyond, seizing the audience with a mixture of realism and eloquence that arises more from the heart than from a myriad of college level courses.
I love this about this dad blogger and Papa Does Preach, overall, as it leans on wisdom and experience to communicate, first, followed by the near-perfect word -- the ultimate impact being nothing short of absolute perfection. See for yourself in his interview below as well as his blog Papa Does Preach, which will have you rethinking the many words your own papa shared with your over the years. You might even feel the urge to call him. Go right ahead as Mike Cruse has that way of moving you. You may just want to wait till after you finish reading his interview.
What is your full name?
Where do you live?
I was born and raised in San Diego, CA, but now resided in Alexandria, Virginia.
How many children do you have?
My wife and I have a 4 year-old son and a daughter on the way.
If you were asked to describe yourself in one word, what would that word be?
What is your personal mantra?
I have always prescribed to the saying, “If you don’t stand for something, then you stand for nothing.”
Do you believe you have a “life’s purpose?” If so, share it.
I don’t know if I have a “purpose” in life (in the conventional meaning). I just try and be the best
dad/husband that I can be. Essentially I try to be everything I never had growing up.
Tell us about you and your life.
I grew up in California. My childhood was not very pleasant. My father was absent, and my mother was very abusive, but I still managed to have great connections with friends. I joined the Army after high school. After returning home, I met my (eventual) wife, several years later. I have always been a creative person -- acting and writing all through my youth. Getting into the blogging world only seemed natural to me.
Finish this sentence, “The best part about being a dad is _____.”
Having someone in my life who sees me as the greatest thing on the planet.
How long have you been blogging for? Do you blog for any group blogs or websites beyond your own?
I have been writing for almost my whole life but blogging for the past 8 years. I used blogging as a form of therapy for the first four years (Hell, I still do). I transferred to writing about parenting when my son was born. I don’t officially write for anyone else, but I have been lucky enough to be published on several other sites like The Huffington Post, Good Men Project, BLUNTMoms and Scary Mommy. I was recently published in a book in 2015 called “Dads Behaving Dadly 2”. It was a dream come true.
What is the name of your blog? When was it launched?
My blog is called Papa Does Preach, and I started it 2014.
Share with us the significance of the name of your blog to you. How did you come up with it?
I wish I could take credit for my blog name, but my wife came up with it. She said that I love to hear myself talk (hence, “preach”). It also ties into my love for pop culture (Madonna’s “Papa Don’t Preach”).
What is the primary focus of your blog?
Honestly, I love talking about issues fathers face as well as my past and my kids. But recently, I’ve been enjoying helping other writers/creators get seen by new audiences.
What do you hope to accomplish through it?
I really just want to bring more quality writing and storytelling to the masses. The internet/blogging world is so bogged down with ‘click-bait crap’ written by people who are looking for quick attention. I think we’ve lost the memory of what it feels like to be truly moved by a good story -- one that made you laugh or cry from your soul.
List any awards you have won.
My son has, on occasion, told me I was the meanest person around. Does that count?
Are you a Brand Ambassador and if so, for which companies?
I am not but I’ve been really lucky to work with brands like Sears, Goodyear, Ellio’s Pizza, Lowes, and myCharge, just to name a few.
Beyond your blog, do you engage in other social media outlets such as Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc.?
I’m “on” all platforms although Facebook and my blog are the “bread and butter” of what I do. I’m beginning to really enjoy Instagram too because I love looking at other people’s pictures.
What is the one piece of advice you would give to dads or moms who may be interested in beginning a blog?
Just do it (Please don’t sue me Nike!!). Seriously, just jump in and do it. Start a conversation with others and stay true to your message. Also, engage with your audience like friends. Many bigger pages/blogs don’t engage in dialogue with their readers. To me, that’s pointless. My blog and Facebook page are like my home. Why would I invite you into my home if I’m going to ignore you?!?
Are you an entrepreneur or professional beyond your blog (and outside of being a dad)? Please share.
If you mean, do I have a day job? Yes. I have been in logistics/operations for almost 20 years now.
Do you support – either formally or informally – a particular social cause?
I am huge civil rights supporter. That ranges widely -- from LGBT rights, to equality for women, as well as fighting for better care for our veterans.
When all is said and done, what is the one thing you hope your loved ones and those who knew you remember about you?
I think that list is probably very long. But if one person feels that I impacted their life in a positive way, then I did a good job.
Now go call your dad...no excuses required. You might even want to bring up Papa Does Preach to him on the call. No doubt, he will appreciate reading it for completely different, albeit, meaningful reasons. And, who knows, doing so might spawn a collaborative blog between the two of you. Hey, you never know...yours might be the next blog I spotlight on THREAD MB as a result.
You can thank Mike later...or Nike (given Mike is in hiding for stealing their corporate slogan). Kidding!!!!